Capitol rioters included highly trained ex-military and cops

Capitol rioters included highly trained ex-military and cops
FILE - In this Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021 file photo, Donald Trump supporters gather outside the Capitol in Washington. Source: AP Photo
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Daily US Times: As supporters of President Donald Trump gathered outside the Capitol last week and sang the national anthem, a line of men wearing body armor and olive-drab helmets trudged purposefully up the marble stairs in a single-file line, each man holding the jacket collar of the one ahead.

The formation is known as “Ranger File,” and it is standard operating procedure for a combat team that is “stacking up” to breach a building — instantly recognizable to any U.S. Marine or soldier who served in Afghanistan and Iraq. It was a chilling sign that many at the vanguard of the violent mob that stormed the Capitol building either had military training or were trained by those who did.

An Associated Press review of social media posts and videos and public records of at least 21 current or former members of the US military or law enforcement have been identified as being at or near the riot, with more than a dozen others under investigation but not named yet. In many cases, those who stormed the seat of American democracy appeared to employ tactics, technology and body armor such as two-way radio headsets that were similar to those of the very police they were confronting.

For years, experts in homegrown extremism have warned about efforts by white-supremacist groups and far-right militants to radicalize and recruit people with military and law enforcement training, and they say the January 6 insurrection that left five people, including a police office, dead saw some of their worst fears realized.

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